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Bits: new Stansted route, HfP in The Economist, British Airways / China Eastern codeshares

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News in brief:

New British Airways route from Stansted

Over the Summer, British Airways has been running a series of routes from Stansted at the weekend.  These use aircraft which would otherwise be flying from London City but which are left idle by the 24 hour curfew at the airport from Saturday lunchtime.

Despite the often appalling flight times, such as 06.00 departures, the services seem to be doing OK.  BA has announced the following changes for the Winter season:

a new route to Chambery, with an outbound flight on Saturday and Sunday mornings from 17th December

Berlin Tegel to operate all year round (13.15 on a Sunday departure)

Malaga and Faro to be extended by an extra two weeks, with flights to end on 19th / 20th November

I expect further announcements of additional Winter routes to follow.

Cash and Avios bookings to Chambery can be made now at

British Airways Stansted routes

HfP in The Economist

The Economist website picked up on the service reductions at British Airways yesterday in this well-written post.

HfP is referenced in the article (although I did not speak to the author) but irrespective of that I recommend that you read it as it offers a good summary of the current position.

This article is outside The Economist paywall so no subscription or sign-up is required.

British Airways announces a codeshare with China Eastern

British Airways has announced a new codeshare agreement with China Eastern even though the airline is a member of the competing SkyTeam alliance.

You will now be able to book flights to Kunming, Xi’an, Nanjing, Hangzhou and Chongqing on a BA flight code, connecting to China Eastern via Chengdu or Shanghai.

Chinese flyers will be able to book flights to Aberdeen, Belfast City, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds Bradford, Manchester and Newcastle using the MU flight code, connecting to China Eastern flights to Heathrow.

How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (October 2022)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points (SPECIAL OFFER), £200 travel credit and unbeatable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,000 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (41)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Anon says:

    Bits: Anyone else spied the extra wee secret competition on the Head For Points Facebook page today?

    Another good reason to followi on Facebook…. 😀

    • Rob says:

      You really shouldn’t follow HFP ONLY on Facebook as you only see about 20% of the posts in your feed!

      That competition is a favour for the owners but it’s a bit non-core for the main site.

      • Anon says:

        Sorry I meant in addition to visiting the website, subscribe on email & LinkedIn. (I do all of these)

        • Ed says:

          I’m also slightly intrigued by the password protected test page that’s appeared on the menu. Secret hfp group?

          • Rob says:

            No, it is used for drafts of competitions where the organiser can see the text in advance.

      • AndyGWP says:

        Raffles. Is there a setting on Wordpress to make links open in a new window on mobile devices? 🙂

        • Alan says:

          On Android if you press and hold the link it’s akin to a right click and you’ll get a pop-up option to open the link in a new tab (amongst other things). Not sure if iOS has something similar or not.

        • Rob says:

          I usually set up my links to automatically do that but I occasionally forget.

  • Mikeact says:

    Hopefully, the BA tie up with China Eastern won’t affect KL/AF Awards in J.

  • harry says:

    “We regularly review our catering to ensure we are investing where it matters most to our customers.”

  • Alex W says:

    Can you make Avios bookings on the China Eastern flights?

  • E1ghty says:

    The degradation of the BA service is making me think twice about saving avios for a long hall first class experience. Just fly business class airberlin or something like that. It sounds to me that BA are taking their customers for granted which seems counterproductive given increased competition.

  • Tina Hammond says:

    BA aren’t the only full service airline to fly from Stanstead. KLM have done so for years with free lounge acces for those in J.
    Nice to get a choice now!

    • Roger says:

      Assuming you mean Stansted, what century are you referring to?

      I regularly used STN connecting at AMS when necessary and for years was KLM Royal Wing (= platinum). Then they ‘merged’ with AF, abandoned STN and I stopped flying KL.

  • G Andrews says:

    Off topic, does anyone know how good the travel accident and inconvenience insurance is that comes with the Amex SPG card? I can’t seem to download the t&c’s.

    I’m travelling around the Caribbean/Miami next month and wondering if it’s necessary to purchase additional travel insurance (presumably to cover theft e.t.c?)

    Wondering if I might just re-open my platinum for the PP and Insurance benefits, Amex Insurance said our previously booked travel would be covered provided I booked them on another held Amex card (which I did).

    Any suggestions? Thanks. 🙂

    • TGLoyalty says:

      My understanding of the SPG and BAPP cover is that its just travel disturbance cover not full travel insurance/medical cover, would either get the platinum or an alternative travel insurance

      • G Andrews says:

        Thanks 🙂

        I plan on taking advantage of BA’s 5th Freedom flights to do a little tour around the Caribbean.
        Any recommendations?


        • Mikeact says:

          Have you actually managed to book any ?

          • Joe says:

            They are all lovely islands but quiet, definitely go to Tobago and Sr. Kitts. You’ll only get an orange juice on the flight…

  • Brian says:

    OT – IHG are offering a 5% discount on the cash element of Points & Cash bookings until some time in September. It’s not exactly a huge saving, but I know that some people have making a Points & Cash booking as one of their Accelerate targets, so every little helps…

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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